Inside the February 2012 Sandpiper

pdf version of the February 2012 print issue

Extra copies of the Sandpiper are available at City Hall, the Chamber of Commerce, the TV Station, the Library and the Powerhouse.

Circle the Wagons
Kathy Garcia


He Said | We Said

He Said  Carl Hilliard


We Said  Sandpiper Editors

Ask Dr. Rich!  Rich Simons

Shame On Who?
Anthony Corso

Little Del Mar, Big Projects

1940s Train Wreck Bill Arballo


Stabalizing the Bluffs  SANDAG


Torrey Pines Bridge Retrofit   Joe Bride


Sorrento Crossing 
Larry Brooks


Sewer Center  Joe Bride


Safety Center  Joe Bride

Political Potentials
Dave Druker

Wayside Horn A Go!
Nancy Fisher

Solomon Solution Sought

For the Dogs
Wade Walker & Penny Abell


For the Kids  Tom Sohn

We Lagoon: part III Preserving Our "New" Lagoon  Dawn Rawls

Remembering Seagrove Artst  Carol Mason

Sing a Song!  Nancy Fisher

Interstate Impact  Ann Gardner

Electrical Outlets
Anthony Corso

Nukes Next Door
Nancy Fisher & Bud Emerson

Costly Cops  Jim Benedict


Fairgrounds Agenda  Bud Emerson

Time Uncertained
Sherryl L. Parks

Scooting Around Town  Terry Sinnott

Main Street Madness

When “More” Becomes “Too Much”  Bob Fuchs


Creeping Entitlement  Ann Gardner

This I Believe
Ann Gardner

Fire an’ Nice  Nancy Fisher



home | home page archives | February 2012 home page
 Breaking News
posted February 16, 2012

Fair Board Agrees to Sweeping
$4.5 Million Dollar Coastal Commission "Cease and Desist" Order

On Wednesday, Feb. 15, the 22nd District Agricultural Association (Fair Board) voted 5-0 to approve a CONSENT CEASE AND DESIST ORDER AND RESTORATION ORDER settling claimed Fair Board violations of the Coastal Act. The 28-page Orders were negotiated after the California Coastal Commission served the Fair Board with notice of intent to formally pursue enforcement action in October 2011,  and the Orders will now go to the Commission for approval on March 7 at its meeting in Chula Vista.

Circus Vargas on the East Overflow Lot (EOL) March 7, 2009.  Photo Dawn Rawls

This is a big deal. Decades of alleged violations of the Coastal Act ranging from construction without permits, to illegal fill of wetlands, to unauthorized events and activities led the Coastal Commission's then-executive director Peter Douglas to describe the Fair Board in June 2011 as "an arrogant agency above the law." Under the Orders things are about to change dramatically.

The Orders spell out, in detail and with clear time frames, a comprehensive approach to bringing the District into compliance with the law, with corrections of existing violations and environmental restoration of key areas, including returning the south parking lot to wetlands and implementation of long-sought buffers. The Orders also require applications for comprehensive coastal permits for activities that have been conducted without permits in the past.    more>>

Complete text of the DAA-approved
version of Consent Orders
Coastal Commission Meeting
October 5, 2011
Powerpoint Presentation
Unauthorized Grading, Fill, and Uses of Wetlands, and Unpermitted Development of a Concert Stage/Bandstand

Breaking News
posted February 14, 2012

Tom Chino, appointed to the Fair Board last year, resigned on Feb. 24. Read his full resignation statement here. The loss of this reform proponent marked a sad day for Del Mar and for everyone who supports transparency and accountability for the 22nd DAA.

Complete text of Tom Chino's letter of resignation here>>


articles from the February print issue>>

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posted 02/23/12
Where Does It go?

Please join the City of Del Mar and Waste Management to learn more about the new collection program.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012
6 PM - 8 PM
City of Del Mar Annex Building
Saturday, March 24, 2102
10 AM -12 PM
City of Del Mar Annex Building

Where does it go? flyer page 2  here

Full flyer here.  

posted 02/22/12
Undergrounding Complete

Del Mar, CA ( February 21, 2012) – The City of Del Mar is pleased to announce that SDG&E has completed undergrounding of utility lines along the east side of Camino del Mar and has removed all previously existing overhead power lines.    media release>>

Pipe Up update
posted 02/17/12

At last some good news regarding the Ag Dist.  Congratulations to all who have worked so hard for so long to get the non-compliance acknowledged and responded to.    Barbara Stegman, San Dieguito Road

posted 02/05/12

Pipe Up update
posted 02/01/12

In January 2012, the Del Mar School Board shut down a fully parent-funded Spanish program at Del Mar Heights School.  And while the Board of Trustees followed the lead of Trustee Comischell Rodruiguez, who lobbied hard for ending the program, parents and STAFF spoke for bringing language to our district and our children.         Katherine White more>>

He said We Said
Anthony Corso

February Print Issue
In the February issue the Sandpiper responds to Mayor Carl Hilliard's letter sent to the editors on January 14.

In his letter Hillliard said about the Sandpiper December editorial: “The information is not true.” However, the public record shows that on October 28 Hilliard voted YES on SANDAG Plan.

Hilliard letter to editors here>>

Sandpiper rebuttal here>>

first posted 01/23/12 at 5:30 pm
updated 01/25/12

The Sandpiper has learned, just as the print issue goes to press, that the Attorney General and the Sierra Club have both joined the Cleveland National Forest Foundation and the Center for Biological Diversity in a joint lawsuit challenging the SANDAG plan.

Press Release from AG Kamala D. Harris

Shame on Who?
Anthony Corso

February Print Issue

Most of this month the large banner unfurled on 15h Street and Camino Del Mar announced a labor dispute between Neidiger, Tucker, Bruner, a Colorado investment banking firm, and the Carpenters Union, Local 55.   more>>

Circle the Wagons
Kathy Garcia

February Print Issue

Many cities are looking to a European solution – the roundabout - to slow traffic, reduce roadways and efficiently carry the large volumes of cars in their city centers. We’ve seen them recently in Encinitas, La Jolla, Leucadia, Seattle and Petaluma.  


Scooting Around Town
Terry Sinnott
February Print Issue

Del Mar is a perfect place to own a scooter. Just like many Mediterranean coastal towns. Del Mar has narrow streets, with limited parking, hills to climb and a wonderful climate. It is convenient, inexpensive and invigorating to go to the store or run errands on your scooter.   


Remembering Seagrove Artist
Carol Mason
February Print Issue

David Webb, the wild-haired painter you may have seen in Sea Grove Park, is dead at 56. He embodied the Art Spirit for he truly lived to paint and painted to live. Painting came pouring from within David and seemed both to quiet and to express his soul. [ ... ]

Dave was Del Mar’s homegrown homeless person and other moms and I felt protective of him. One time I asked a new deputy sheriff not to hassle him. We all knew him. He wouldn’t bother anyone.


Wayside Horn A Go!
Nancy Fisher
February Print Issue

Thanks to the efforts of the Del Mar Quiet Zone Committee (DMQZ), chaired by Hershell Price, the North County Transit District (NCTD) will be contributing non-local funds of $200,000 to support the construction costs of installing a Wayside Horn system at the Coast Boulevard Crossing. 


Little Del Mar,
Big Projects

February Print Issue

1940s Train Wreck Bill Arballo  + Stabilizing the Bluffs by SANDAG


“On New Year’s Eve in 1940, residents were in a festive mood and there were parties everywhere. “It had rained for several days, and the ground was soaked.
“Shortly after 8 p.m., a passenger train passed through the village heading south. Less than 45 minutes later, a northbound freight train plunged down a 65-foot embankment when a bluff collapsed at the foot of Ninth [sic] Street [probably closer to 8th St].
"   more>>

SANDAG is working to stabilize portions of the 1.6 miles of coastal bluffs between Seagrove Park and Torrey Pines State Beach in the City of Del Mar. This integral part of the 128-mile Los Angeles to San Diego (LOSSAN) rail corridor provides a vital link for passenger and freight movements within San Diego County, as well as between San Diego, Los Angeles, and points further north.   more>>

Sing A Song!
Nancy Fisher
February Print Issue

In 2003, when Del Mar Community Connections put out the word that they needed a pianist to accompany their newly-formed sing-along group, they hit the jackpot. Linda Chisari, who’d been playing since her parents gave her a toy piano at the age of three responded, and the rest is sing-along history. “We were in like Flynn,” says Charlotte Gumbrell who, as chair of the Recreation Committee, was asked to start the group. 


Solomon Solution Sought
February Print Issue

For the Dogs Wade Walker & Penny Abel + For the Kids Tom Sohn


DOGS! What do they want? Food, shelter, companionship, the occasional treat and cardiovascular exercise. Same as the human members of the family. The problem in Del Mar is that it’s darn hard to find anyplace other than the Shores Park to get that exercise.   more>>

The Shores Park was, until recently, a great place for families with children to play soccer or teach a young one how to ride a bike without a concrete punishment for falling. Dog Beach is a great location for the dogs of Del Mar to run free.   more>>

Nukes Next Door
Nancy Fisher & Bud Emerson   
February Print Issue

Japan’s nuclear disaster at Fukushima has reignited contentious debate about the safety of the San Onofre nuclear power plant and everyone from coastal residents, academics, nuclear “experts,” grass-roots organizations, to the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission has begun to weigh in on the lessons learned from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi Accident.

At issue is whether the NRC has taken, or will take, the necessary steps to prevent Orange County, and some say the entire coastline from San Diego to Los Angeles, from becoming the next Fukushima, or whether the plant should be shut down.    more>>

Costly Cops
Jim Benedict
February Print Issue

The City Council, at the January 9th meeting, approved the implementation of the process to enter into discussions with other local cities to explore options to our current sheriff’s contract.  [ ... ] Our current 5-year contract expires on 6/30/12 and can be cancelled with 12 months notice.

Why the concern? Level of service does not seem to be a major concern, although this is very difficult to quantify. The bigger issue is the explosion of the costs of the sheriff’s contract. The costs will outstrip projected City revenues. As with most cities the major concern is the abnormal growth of pensions. The sheriff’s contract may contain the most extreme growth of pension costs in the county.   more>>

Species Soar
Ed Mirsky
February Print Issue


The San Dieguito Lagoon Area Monthly Bird Survey completed two years of monthly counts in December 2011. The 200th bird species, a Common Murre, was recorded in November and the 201st species, a Ferruginous Hawk, was recorded in December.   more>>

This I Believe
Ann Gardner
February Print Issue

I don’t go to Flower Hill Shopping Mall anymore. And I won’t be going after the construction is finished either. There just aren’t enough places to go now that the movie theatre and Book Works are gone. Somehow the balance tipped – what could be a better gathering place than the Pannikin/Book Works combination: creaking wood floors, a book lover owner and her devoted helpers along with the indoor/outdoor European atmosphere of Pannikin. Yes I know Pannikin is still there, but the movie theatre isn’t and somehow – with the loss of Book Works, the balance shifted away from a local place to go.   more>>

Fire an' Nice
Nancy Fisher
February Print Issue

After 21 years as a Del Mar firefighter Captain Patrick O’Neil still loves what he does, loves where he works, and looks forward to coming to work every day that he’s on the crew.  [ ... ] Was he one of those little kids who always wanted to be a firefighter when he grew up? “Yes,” he says, “I was exactly that kid, and then I attended a high school where the local firefighters would run on the grounds as part of their physical fitness program. I’d go over and ask them a bunch of questions about their job.”   more>>

posted 01/16/12
A Whale of a Tale

Thursday, February 2
TV Studio, 240 10th Street

Del Mar Television Foundation’s Oceans Awareness committee is pleased to present a“Whale of a Tale” program on Feb 2nd.  Please join us once more in welcoming Biologist Eddie Kisfaludy as he takes us on a special adventure through his video documenting the largest whale fall know to science and it all happened right off our shores.  You may have seen reports of the large fin whale that beached itself on a San Diego Beach. Eddie gives us a glimpse into the dramatic effort of scientists from Scripps, NOAA, Sea World, Lifeguards and Virgin Oceanic.

As former Field Curator for Scripps Oceanography, his expertise as a
biologist and pilot has sent him all over the world and he is currently working with Sir Richard Branson and Virgin Oceanic in efforts to explore the ocean’s 5 deepest places using a manned submarine.


full archive going back to December 2007

readers' comments

02/01 ... In January 2012, the Del Mar School Board shut down a fully parent-funded Spanish program at Del Mar Heights School.  Katherine White more>>

01/14 ... Reading the Sandpiper editorial (here) you probably wonder what in the world Carl Hilliard is thinking. I certainly would from this dispatch except for one thing: The information isn’t true. ... Carl Hilliard   more>>

12/23 ... To borrow words from The Economist editorial writers, the idea is "barking mad" from their standpoint. ... Bob Ringland more>>

10/29 ... The park was “barefoot friendly.” Babies played on the grass, toddlers and adults ran playfully and barefoot on the grass. ... Rich Ehrenfeld  more>>

10/29 ... The Del Mar Quiet Zone Committee members are very happy to announce that they have raised $173,000 in written pledges toward their goal of $378,000, ...  Hershell Price more>>

08/23 ... At first, I thought it was a neighbor throwing a raging party ... Piper Underwood  more>>

08/23 ...  On the hill where views are good and the neighborhood tranquil, we have been – almost literally – stunned by the noise levels of the amplified entertainment at the Fairgrounds this year... Roger Reynolds   more>>

07/12 ...  I certainly agree with Sam Borgese’s comments that now is the time to move on to implementation, not more studies.  Hershell Price  more>>

07/06 ...  KUDOS!  Congratulations on yet another great edition of the Sandpiper. You consistently put out a quality journal, with well-written, accurate and timely articles.  Adam Birnbaum  more>>

07/01 ...  We should not rush into building a new city hall while in the next few years the post office building will be available, a perfect location.  Marcel Van Boxtel   more>>

07/01 ... [My neighbor], like some others, feels that with the arrival of summer they are confronted with the clamor, din, and roar of what seems to be “unending noise.”   Anthony Corso  more>>

05/09 ...   The following comments are not about Pot.  They're about the reckless use of computer technology in the name of creativity.   David Arnold  more>>

04/28 ...  I am requesting the “Sandpiper” alter the letter I sent to you [ on April 8, 2011 ] for publication.   Dr. Paul Chasan  more>>

04/09 ... My intent in the upcoming city council meeting is not to detract from the sense of place or pedestrian flow.   Dr. Paul Chasan  more>>


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